Other People’s Poems – Close Readings, Analyses and Poem Commentaries
To paraphrase Owen Marshall: if you want to know the time, look at the clock’s face. If you want to know how a clock works, you have to take the back off. And that’s what close reading is – taking the time to try and work out what a poem is doing, and how. Drinking it in. Learnings its secrets. Wandering around the poem’s rooms and rumaging through its drawers.
The commentaries below are not offered as definitive readings – a good poem will always have more than one ‘meaning’. Rather, these are offered as part of an ongoing conversation about poems that have intrigued me. As poets, we have galleries of muses and teachers on our bookshelves, waiting on our pleasure. Every poem can teach us something, even if only what not to do.
- The Tuning Spiral – Pascale Petit’s Mirador.
- The Other/Self – Imtiaz Dhaker’s Its Face.
- Flight and Method – Rhian Gallagher’s The Walnut Tree.
- Behind the Lens – Karen Zelas’s In Camera.
Other Writers on Close Reading: